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Joyce Louise Koops
February 17, 1933 ~ November 18, 2023 (age 90) 90 Years Old
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Joyce Louise Koops was born on February 17, 1933 to Joe and Jesse (Rosendale) Koops on the family farm north of Downs. Although it was not known immediately at birth, it was soon discovered that she was deaf at an early age. At the age of 5, her parents decided to send her and her sister, Carol to the Kansas School for the Deaf in Olathe, Kansas where she learned sign language and received her education over the next 15 years. It was a very difficult time for the family through the height of the Depression years of the 1930's, when crops and income were scarce and also in the years following with the outbreak of World War II, where two brothers served their country overseas. Joyce and her remaining siblings along with her parents, were tasked with caring for the family farm, much of which required manual labor.
Following her schooling, she helped care for her parents in the family home until their deaths, when she and sister, Carol took up residence next door under the care of sisters Rose Nyhoff and Ileen Tanis as well as extended family members. She and Carol did part time cleaning jobs around Downs. During that time, Joyce enjoyed taking walks downtown greeting people in the community with her smile and pleasant nature, which was returned in kind. Joyce enjoyed doing embroidery and needlework that often times was contributed to the church for sale at the annual fall bazaar. She also loved to play Chinese checkers, Sorry, and complete crossword and picture puzzles along with her joy of cooking. Brothers and sisters, who had a birthday could always count on a birthday cake made by Joyce for their special day. She always remembered the birthdays of her nephews and nieces when they were younger, by faithfully sending birthday greetings to them.
In August 2006, Joyce joined her sister Carol, at the Downs Care and Rehabilitation Center, where she participated eagerly with the other residents in games and social activities. She resided there until the time of her death. She claimed Jesus, as her Lord and Savior at an early age, professing her faith at the Pilgrim Lutheran Church for the Deaf located in the Kansas City area on May 21, 1950. She was a lifelong member of the Dispatch Christian Reformed Church, where she attended regularly and enjoyed songs and messages in sign language. Joyce went to be with her Lord and Savior on Saturday, November 18th, 2023 at the Good Samaritan Hospital in Kearney, Nebraska following a short illness. She was preceded in death by her parents, brothers Bert, Chester, and Rol, sisters Carol Koops and Ileen Tanis, brother in law, Lawrence Tanis, and sisters in law Frances, Rhoda, and Vi Koops. She is survived by her sister Rose Nyhoff and her husband Merle, of Downs and brother John and wife Terril, of Smith Center. and a host of nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be at Dispatch Christian Reformed Church, on Tuesday, November 21 from 6 - 7:30 p.m. Funeral Services will be at 10 a.m., Wednesday, November 22, at the Dispatch Christian Reformed Church with Pastor Dave Hardy officiating. Interment will follow at Dispatch Cemetery. Memorials may be made to Downs Care and Rehabilitation Center, Kansas School for the Deaf, Olathe, Kansas or the Dispatch Christian Reformed Church, in care of Schoen Funeral Home And Monuments, 1001 Morgan Avenue, Downs, Kansas 67437.